Baseball. The mere mention of the word strikes fear into the heart of many Americans. This once proud American sport (like most others) has gone too far. Ten hour long games, juiced up players, and subhuman fans have scared off the masses. In light of this, a couple times a month the Oakland A's lure curious citizens like myself for a two dollar entry and dollar hot dogs. The dogs should have set off alarm bells, but I was naive. We all were.
We arrived and the tickets were sold out. We bought some from a scalper who fleeced us for an extra couple of bucks for four. That equalled one or two fewer hot dogs. Finding the dogs was our next order of business. As we wandered the underbelly of the arena, we were treated to enormous and loud fans carting mountainous stacks of hot dogs back to their seats where they might have died from taking one bite too many. We could only be so lucky.
The cynic in me thinks that the dollar hot dogs are a clever way of trying to rope people into buying the very overpriced beer. If my memory serves me correctly, a Bud was something like six bucks, while a micro brew was eight. The fans are not fooled. Instead of saving money on their tickets and hot dogs and spending their hard earned money on the beer, people have found a simple solution. They get seriously bombed before entering the stadium. Men with too much aggression and frustration with their demeaning day jobs let loose and insult all of us with their unrealized frustrations with their long unrealized dreams. We saw a young girl in short shorts falling down drunk, being supported by her friends, and an older woman who I think was her mother. All she wanted to do was take her pants off. My companion just kept saying, "what must this place look like for a Raiders Game?" Neither of us wanted to find out.
After finally finding a concessions stand that would sell us some dogs, we loaded up for the group and headed to our seats.
When we finally got to our nosebleed seats and opened up our little presents, we understood what a terrible terrible mistake we had made.
There may in fact be a worse hot dog somewhere in the world, but I have no idea where that might be.
We didn't really let this dampen our already subdued mood. We weren't drunk, and we were at a baseball game for chrissake! We were on the verge of hibernation. Here's a picture of recently lapsed vegetarian eating her first, and possibly last hot dog.
While neither the game nor the hot dogs were a hit with any of us, it was certainly a cultural experience. One that I heartily recommend.